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Who Exactly Is George Takei?
George Takei, an American actor, novelist, and activist, was born Hosato Takei on April 20, 1937. He is best known for playing Hikaru Sulu in the Star Trek television series and its succeeding motion pictures.
Takei was raised in internment camps controlled by the United States during World War II with his Japanese American parents. He started acting in college, which led to him getting the part of Sulu in 1965 and playing it again in the 1990s.
He became a well-known advocate for LGBT rights and engaged in state and local politics after coming out as gay in 2005. He has been a strong supporter of immigrant rights, in part because of his work on the 2012 Broadway production Allegiance, which is about the internment process.
Takei was fluent in both English and Japanese growing up, despite the fact that he was born and raised in California. He has garnered various prizes and plaudits for his work on human rights and Japan-United States ties, including his work with the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles, California.
A Glimpse of His Early Years of Life
Takei was born Hosato Takei on April 20, 1937, in Los Angeles, California, to Japanese American parents Takekuma Norman Takei, a real estate agent, and Fumiko Emily Nakamura, who were both born in Yamanashi Prefecture. His father gave him the name George in honour of King George VI of the United Kingdom, who was crowned in 1937, not long before Takei was born.
The Takei family was interned at Rohwer, Arkansas, in the Rohwer War Relocation Center after Executive Order 9066 was signed in 1942, forcing them to live in Santa Anita Park’s repurposed stables. The detention camp was encircled by barbed wire walls and situated in swamplands. Later, the family was relocated to California’s Tule Lake War Relocation Center for detention.
Takei had a large family that was residing in Japan at the time of the war. His relatives included an aunt who resided in Hiroshima and a young cousin who perished in the atomic bombs that obliterated the city. “My aunt and newborn cousin were found charred in a ditch in Hiroshima,” Takei recalled in his own words.
Takei’s family spent five years living on Skid Row in Los Angeles after leaving the Tule internment camp at the close of World War II and being left without any bank accounts, a home, or a family business. At Los Angeles High School, where he attended Mount Vernon Junior High School, he presided over the Boys Senior Board. He belonged to Koyasan Buddhist Temple Boy Scout Troop 379.
Takei enrolled at the University of California, Berkeley after finishing high school and began studying architecture there. Later, he changed schools and enrolled at the University of California, Los Angeles, where he graduated in 1964 with a master’s degree in drama and in 1960 with a bachelor of arts in theatrical.
He also studied at Sophia University in Tokyo and the Shakespeare Institute in Stratford-upon-Avon, England. He studied acting at the Desilu Workshop in Hollywood.
Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Opposition To Gay Marriage Is The Reason George Takei Said He Came Out As Gay
In a recent interview with The Stage, George Takei disclosed that he came out as gay in 2005 in response to Arnold Schwarzenegger’s defeat of a measure that would have allowed gay marriage in California. From 2003 to 2011, Schwarzenegger presided as governor of California. In California’s Frontiers magazine, Takei came out as gay. The “Star Trek” veteran had already been married for 18 years at the time.
Why did I wait so long to emerge? Says Takei. “I wanted to work because I’m an actress. I discovered early on that you couldn’t be an out actor and expect to work. Additionally, I was already a lot more restricted since I am an Asian-American actor. There are still prominent Hollywood actresses who choose to stay indoors to save their careers.
Takei said, “For a significant portion of my career, I remained secretive. “Despite the fact that I wrote numerous checks to AIDS groups, I remained mute during the AIDS epidemic, which makes me feel guilty.
How did I come out at that time? Due to the fact that Schwarzenegger ran for office on the promise of being a Hollywood star who had worked and made friends with gays and lesbians, many of whom supported him, but later rejected that legislation. At the age of 68, I talked to the media for the first time as a gay guy because I was so furious.
Democratic Assemblyman Mark Leno had proposed a bill to legalise gay marriage, but Schwarzenegger rejected it. Schwarzenegger said at the time (via The Independent), “This bill only adds uncertainty to a constitutional matter.” Two years later, he vetoed a different bill that would have allowed same-s*x unions.
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